Reptile Roundup - Driving a Cobra in the Southeast? You Need to Be Here!

If you’re a fan of Shelby’s most famous sports car and looking for an opportunity to drive your Cobra the way it was designed to be driven, the Reptile Roundup is the event for you. This annual get-together in central Florida has it all, testing everything from pure acceleration and handling, to the skill of the driver and the shininess of the paint. For the last half dozen years, Larry Hess of the Deep South Cobra Club has been handling the details of this annual 4-day blast, held each November for Cobra enthusiasts in the Southeast. No matter how you prefer to enjoy your Cobra, you’ll find a way to do it here. 

The Palm Beach Gardens Embassy Suites in Palm Beach, Florida is where it all began. Drivers checked in on Thursday afternoon and got together for a Friday morning cruise, this year visiting the unique Navy Seal Museum in Jupiter, Florida. More than half the fun was having a couple of dozen Cobras caravanning to and from the event. As more owners arrived, the Meet and Greet party went into full swing, held at Backdraft Racing’s (BDR) show room in Boynton Beach, Florida. Everyone enjoyed pizza, drinks, and car talk. BDR has been a major sponsor of the event since it began and their BMW-based Cobras make up the majority of cars at the event.

Saturday is when the real fun began, when the Cobra caravan cruised to Palm Beach International Raceway for a series of events that included track time in your Cobra, as well as a karting track, parade laps, and a custom car competition for those who preferred to show rather than go. Backdraft Racing showcased their latest track day car and also had willing mechanics on hand should problems arise with any of the vehicles at the event. Since competition is a great part of the fun, track times were recorded and Richard Bailey set the quick time of the day in the new BDR Track Day car. He was followed by Dave Evans in his Factory Five racing (FFR) Spec Racer and John Lennon was third fastest, in his BDR roadster powered by a 342-Roush V-8. 

Capturing the top trophy in the show and shine, Stan Lane and his young son Christian took home the Best of Show trophy with their Excalibur Cobra, outfitted with a supercharged 500 hp, 302 V-8 and in the family for more than 20 years. A second car show in Jupiter, Florida followed that afternoon, adding to the fun with a special display section for Cobras. The Reptile Roundup always ends with a club dinner and annual meeting on Saturday night, this year held at JJ Muggs Stadium Grille. The folks from Finish Line and Backdraft Racing supplied the door prizes. The Sunday morning breakfast sendoff wrapped up the event, with drivers already looking forward to their next get-together. If you’d like to be part of this precisely-tailored Cobra event, check out the website for details.

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